Four MAU wrestlers still in mix for NE titles

PROVIDENCE, R.I. — Four Mount Anthony wrestlers remain in the hunt for a New England championship after the first day of the regional on Friday at the Providence Career and Technical Academy.

Keegan Coon, Tyler Burgess, Sam Wilkins and Calvin Hayford all won their matches to move on to the quarterfinal round, which will take place on Saturday.

With a handful of consolation matches left Friday night, MAU was in second overall, four points behind Timberlane, N.H.

Coon advances to the quarterfinal after surviving a 1-0 decision over David McKay of Greater Lowell (Mass.) at 145 pounds. Neither scored in the first period and while McKay took the down position to start the second, Coon rode him out to keep the score at 0-0 into the third.

In the third, Coon escaped in the first few seconds and held off McKay to advance to the quarterfinals.

Burgess looked strong at 152 pounds, controlling Acton-Boxborough's Chase Anestis throughout their match.

Burgess scored the opening takedown for a 2-0 lead, then scored four points in the second to go up 6-0.

In the third, Burgess remained aggressive, scoring another takedown for the major decision and bonus points for the team.

At 195 pounds, Wilkins faced New London (Conn's) Jacob Commander in a nail-biter. After a scoreless first, Commander gained an escape in the second to take a 1-0 lead.

In the third, Wilkins escaped himself in the first few seconds to tie the match, and it stayed that way through regulation and a 1-minute sudden victory overtime.

In the tie-breaker, Commander chose to start down and Wilkins kept him off the board for the entire 30 seconds. When it was Wilkins' turn, he nearly escaped with Commander holding onto his foot for dear life to prevent the escape. The referee called stalling to give the go-ahead point to Wilkins, who ended up escaping seconds later and winning 3-1.

At 285 pounds, Calvin Hayford started his final New England tournament in a big way against Cumberland's Jaylen Reynolds. The first period was a feeling-out process, neither wrestler finding an advantage. In the second period, Hayford worked to turn Reynolds onto his back from the top position and eventually gained the fall at 2:57.

Seven other MAU wrestlers go into the consolation bracket, with it a chance to wrestle back to the top six to garner a placement.

Julian Granger, Keenan Taylor, Noah Call, Gage McLaughlin, Adam Osha, Chris Mayer and Colin Crowley all lost in the second round to go into the consolations.

Osha won his first match at 160, beating Johnston's Elijah Burgess 6-4 with a pair of escapes in the third period. Mayer won his first match as well, an 11-4 victory over King Philip's Shawn Conniff. Mayer was a takedown machine as he pulled away in the third with three takedowns.

Colin Crowley won his first match of the tournament, a fall in 2:19 over Foxborough's William Ogeberer.

Taylor lost in a close 5-3 decision, hurting his leg in the process before falling the first round of consolations. McLaughlin was disqualified in his opening match at 138 pounds for getting too many stall calls.

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